The first and second degree sentences against the vice president of the Senate Roberto Calderoli, accused of slander aggravated by racial hatred for having defined the former Minister of Integration Cecile Kyenge as “orangutan” on 13 July 2013, during the party of the Northern League in Treviglio.
Now the trial – born on the initiative of the Bergamo Public Prosecutor’s Office given that the former minister has not filed a complaint or requested compensation – will start from scratch and the documents have been sent to the Bergamo Court, but the prescription is near so much so that Calderoli’s defense asked the Supreme Court to declare it. But in the opinion of the ‘stoats’ – as we learn from sentence 21829 of the Fifth Criminal Section filed today, relating to the hearing held last May 17 – the limitation period of seven years and six months from the date of the crime has not yet matured. as the procedure had “a suspension of the term for 1,071 days”, which is also necessary for the intervention of the Council, often brought up when the crimes are charged to parliamentarians.
According to the Supreme Court, unjustified and without investigating the case, the Court of Bergamo during the first instance trial, during the hearing of 14 January 2019, had not recognized the legitimate impediment to appear of Calderoli who had to undergo surgery and had rejected the request for postponement made by his lawyers. “The judges of merit – affirms the Supreme Court – without any in-depth technical analysis, contradicted the evaluation of a doctor (who appears to be the director of the Oncological Surgery Department of the Venetian Oncological Institute) who affirmed the non-postponement of a delicate related intervention to a serious pathology “.
Furthermore, the verdict continues, the Bergamo Court – with an “error” not corrected even by the appellate judges – “did not explain on the basis of which elements it was possible to argue that the delicate intervention could be rescheduled after one or two days: statement that should have been supported by concrete data and maximum experience that made it possible to believe that the deferral was compatible with the time needed for the preparatory exams, with the commitments of the medical team and with the ‘waiting lists’ of health facilities “. “Consequently”, concludes the Supreme Court, “the first instance sentence of January 14, 2019 (which had sentenced Calderoli to 18 months of imprisonment, suspended sentence) and that issued by the Court of Appeal of Brescia on 21 October 2020 which had reduced the sentence, and the extent of which is not known. “For the further course”, the ermellini – college chaired by Rosella Catena, supervisor Pierangeolo Cirullo – sent the dossier back to Bergamo.
On the other hand, the Court of Cassation did not examine – given the priority of the reason over the legitimate impediment – the thesis of Calderoli’s defense requesting the acquittal of the Northern League exponent, arguing that “the animalistic metaphor used during the meeting” is not defamatory since “such types of metaphor, which have long since entered the social tradition, are no longer perceived as defamatory, as they are also quite widespread in the political sphere “.
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